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Smartphones have no place in Microsoft’s new mission statement


Satya Nadella

Satya Nadella has emailed Microsoft staff with a new mission statement and outlook for the 2016 financial year.

The message is largely positive, with the CEO setting out a number of ambitious goals, though he also admits that the company will inevitably have to make some “tough choices” with parts of the business that fail to hit their targets.

The memo, obtained by GeekWire, identifies the cloud, PC and productivity as three key areas for Microsoft moving forwards.

"Our mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more," writes Nadella. "This mission is ambitious and at the core of what our customers deeply care about. We have unique capability in harmonizing the needs of both individuals and organizations. This is in our DNA."

Windows 10, which will land at the end of July, is clearly an area that the company is excited about, and it seems that Nadella himself can barely wait for the new operating system to arrive.

"We have approached Windows 10 with a growth mindset and obsession for our customers," he said. "We aspire to move people from needing Windows to choosing Windows to loving Windows."

He also appears keen to rid Microsoft of its conservative image, and says that the firm is growing more open and accessible.

“The world is diverse. We will better serve everyone on the planet by representing everyone on the planet. We will be open to learning our own biases and changing our behaviours so we can tap into the collective power of everyone at Microsoft. We don’t just value differences, we seek them out, we invite them in. And as a result, our ideas are better, our products are better, and our customers are better served."

SEE ALSO: Windows 10 release date and features

Windows Phone mobiles are conspicuous because of their absence from the email, though Nadella does highlight mobile as integral to Microsoft's goals.

Still, we can’t help but think that Microsoft’s flagging mobile business may or may not benefit from a difficult decision or two.


June 26, 2015, 11:16 am

Isn't that because the Windows Phone brand is no longer used? Everything is called Windows (10) isn't? http://www.windowscentral.c...

Menorca Man

June 26, 2015, 11:44 am

A very negative and sensationalist headline. You could at least have ended it with a question mark!!

According to this GeekWire article dated 17 June 2015 (http://www.geekwire.com/201..., Terry Myerson is the new head of the Windows & Devices Group. His remit includes driving forward and building all Microsoft devices, including LUMIA PHONES.

Menorca Man

June 26, 2015, 11:59 am

A very negative and sensationalist headline. You could at least have ended it with a question mark!!
According to a GeekWire article dated 17 June regarding Microsoft Executive changes, Terry Myerson is the new Head of the Windows & Devices Group. His remit includes driving Windows forward across devices of all types and building all Microsoft devices including LUMIA PHONES.


June 26, 2015, 12:08 pm

However MS seem keen to push their full range of services (email, word, powerpoint, etc, collaboration) across any and all platforms. I run Android, but I feel no handicap versus a Windows Phone as regards any of the above. So WP will stand or fail on its own merits, it does not seem to get any special favours from being part of MS. That does seem to leave it pretty much out in the cold.


June 26, 2015, 1:37 pm

Are you slow or something? How many times do you have to hear Satya say Mobile-first, Cloud-first? Did you even read his email?

Chris Gomez

June 26, 2015, 3:59 pm

It's a really weird takeaway from an email that was very vague. When you look at what was stated by name:

Xbox Live was mentioned. The Xbox One was NOT mentioned. "first-party gaming efforts" was mentioned, but hey couldn't that mean just publishing for mobile, console (maybe Sony's?) and PC (which could also mean Linux and OSX).

The "Windows device platform and our devices" was specifically mentioned. "Our devices" today obviously means Surface/Surface Pro and Lumia. Even the other desktop and laptop PCs in the world aren't their devices. But no one is going to intrepret that as MSFT exiting serving those markets. It turns out Lumia and Surface Pro got a much clearer indirect mention than Xbox One did.

HoloLens got a direct mention.

The ONLY statement that bodes poorly for Microsoft first-party phones is "make some tough choices in areas where things are not working". But man, that applies to everything. It applies to console (currently "losing" to Sony if you only care about hardware sales), and even Windows (which very well could go open source once it becomes a loss leader for services).

But the poor journalists who really have no sense of comprehension want it to say "Windows Mobile OS isn't even going to be released" even though by using THEIR STANDARDS of "mentions" it got more of a mention than Windows on desktop and laptop. The word Azure appears NOWHERE.


June 26, 2015, 4:22 pm

WTF? was the author of this article a bit dense or something?

Bobby Edwards

June 26, 2015, 4:42 pm

Gee, yet another tiny brained writer who writes for todays "Media". Your hatred of a product does not mean it is going away as one of the "tough choices", just because it was not mentioned by name. Microsoft makes many products, must of which were not mentioned by name, do think they are all going away?
Now did yourself read, or did you get an adult to read to you the statement after the latest shake-up in the Microsoft Management organization? Well, in it they used the term "tough choices" to describe, that some people would no longer be there, or running the department, that they did.
So that said, did it ever cross your space, the one between your ears, that maybe people are being given goals that if they fail to reach could mean a change in their career? For example if you don't start selling more MS keyboards, or webcams or what ever a person might be in charge of, then would need to make "tough choices" and say things like your fired.
What is with todays "media" writers, they can barely put on shoed, yet they try to thing, truth is most just what the first guy wrote, and follow with more of the same. Watch how many will have a story like this out by the end of the day.


June 26, 2015, 5:08 pm

And to think, this whole time I thought he was trying to find a nice way to hint that they're scrapping the Surface Hub! :-P

Chris Gomez

June 26, 2015, 5:37 pm

You're completely right, and as a WP user, I totally understand why someone might not leave Android for WP. After all, more and more MSFT services are coming to Android.

On the other hand, I'm actually much happier that we have one company at least giving lip service to being open about their products and services. Sure, I'm not going to sit here an put a halo on MSFT's head, but the way Google purposely tries to thwart MSFT platforms and Apple just simply being insular and saying "if it's not in our walls, it doesn't exist" isn't great for users.

I'm not saying "as a consumer you should vote with your wallet and blah blah". I believe you should use what makes you happy. When you can't use what makes you happy because it doesn't fit a company's plan... that just sucks.


June 26, 2015, 5:45 pm

Windows Phone is awesome. If for some reason I couldn't buy any new ones, I'd just keep using my current Lumia until it broke. Then I'd buy a used Lumia as a replacement until that broke, and so on, until there were no more used Lumias left, in which case I'd switch back to a flip phone. I'll never go back to iOS or Android. It's Windows Phone or nothing for me.


June 26, 2015, 6:04 pm

Looks lime MS is taking a different approach, shifting away from this notion of a "phone" and more towards a mini mobile computer. I used to think it would be cool to hold my phone up to my door to come in, have my lights know I'm home, pop my phone down and use one of those LED based "keyboards on any surface" to operate the device as it would have just popped up on the closest screen.
Well in the next few months the Continuum feature will turn your phone device into a computer. The mobile OS is losing differentiators, because technology is catching up. It was smart to push them when everyone was "duking it out" early on, but as tech got better iOS and Android were able to better compete with the things that made WP better (social integration, syncing files across devices, more than just search results when you searched the web [like movie, times, locations, indoor mall maps, and reviews one swipe across from the ticket buying app, and another screen with other relevant app results]).
It's not that the other OS's couldn't get you the same results, bur you'd either have to take more steps or find a specialized app. It's funny, people really took it for granted that iOS and Android didn't have an sensible way to run even basic things like Twitter, Facebook, and maybe even YouTube......without getting an app. Sure, that's not a big deal, and it even made the phone look look less attractive. People had issue with MS having poorer experiences with their Facebook, Twitter, and (pretty much lack of) YouTube app) but didn't realize they were all built into the phone.
I guess my point is that MS realized that putting lots of money into making one of the efficient mobile OS's ever, with lots of differentiators didn't really pay of, and that eventually due to increasing tech meaningful differentiators soul be hard to come by anyway. They then realized that they can make way more money (or at least saw bigger opportunities) from the non WP consumers. Because of assimilation,their mobile OS shouldn't take nearly as much to keep it in the game and there will be enough people using Windows to make hardware manufacturers push it. In the end as long as they can get people all aboard The Azure Express MS will do enough business to get people to buy the hardware.


June 26, 2015, 6:19 pm

I actually used my LG Quantum until late last year haha. Even after it got stolen I snagged one on EBay. While WP 7 gave me some reasons to like it better, but it was more about that damn keyboard.

Eventually my screen cracked and I didn't want to spend money on such an old piece of hardware. BUt you bet I used that phone (broken screen and all) as long as I could. Then one fateful day I gave up hopes D realized that I had to come to grips with reality and that physical keyboards on phones went the way of the Atari 2600 and picked up a 635.
I still use my LG as a mini portable home audio controller. I hooked it up to my Bluetooth speakers and I've got the music catalogue at my fingertips. ;)


June 26, 2015, 6:41 pm

I've seen some dodgy click-bait on this site but this one takes the cake. A waste of my time reading spurious and specious 'reasoning'.

I'm now re-evaluating your article on the supposed demise of the Wii U. Any further editorials or opinion pieces will be tainted.



June 27, 2015, 6:02 am

So a "Mobile first cloud first" mission doesn't have room for smart phones but it does for wearables and LTE tablets? I guess MSFT should just $shit-can the new phones planned for Win10 because you think that's what Nadella said in his email. Sure glad you're not running the show.

Chris Gomez

June 27, 2015, 12:59 pm

In the case of Facebook, they were told either to pull the integration or Facebook would stop supporting MSFT in various ways. No more .NET SDK, no Windows 8 "app", no WP8 "app", etc.

It's awful because the WP8.1 app doesn't work at all. You get a notification from the worthless app and when you click the notification you quite literally are directed to a completely random location in the Facebook app... at the cost of having to wait for it to whir to life.

WP7 style integration was truly the way to go and truly much more efficient than what we're being allowed in WP8 by the corporate overlords at Facebook and Linked. I just stopped using those services. If I can't use them efficiently on my phone, why bother? MSFT proved there's zero need for an "app".


June 28, 2015, 1:50 pm

Agreed. But fear not, this article is clickbait nonsense. Microsoft are NOT giving up on mobile phones, they've only recently bought the phone business off Nokia and integrated it into Microsoft as a business unit, they may adjust their ranges as time goes on, maybe. But considering they've just renamed the phone OS from Windows Phone to Windows Mobile and are working with Intel to produce x86 phones and tablets by the end of this year, Windows on a phone is going nowhere.

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